The Roadmap analysis estimates that an aggregate $18 billion of new financing is needed to achieve a 20% waste reduction — roughly $2 billion per year over the next decade. This may seem large, but it amounts to only a tenth of a penny of investment for each pound of food waste reduced over a decade. This one-time investment will yield $100 billion of societal economic benefits.
The Roadmap will require nearly $18 billion of investment to implement within a decade, or roughly $2 billion per year, which costs less than a tenth of a penny per pound of food waste reduced. This one-time investment is projected to yield roughly $100 billion in societal economic value over the same period. Key financial benefits include a reduction in consumer food bills, increased business profit, and a reduced tax burden for municipalities to pay landfill disposal fees.
Most of this funding will flow naturally from market forces or the extension of existing government programs. The $17.8 billion can be broken out into private, philanthropic, and government sources.
Private investment of $7 billion is expected to flow, as investment opportunities offer a compelling risk-adjusted return. The largest portion is expected from internal corporate capital expenditures on solutions such as Secondary Resellers, Packaging Adjustments, or Smaller Plates in dining facilities. Additional private capital is needed for private venture and growth equity to fund and scale businesses that provide emerging solutions. Private project equity and debt will be needed mainly for large recycling facilities.
Government support of $8 billion is expected mainly via existing legislation. Most of this funding consists of tax incentives over the next decade to incentivize food businesses to increase their rate of food donations. In addition, nearly a billion dollars of public project finance is needed to stimulate projects that have a strong social benefit, such as WRRF with AD and Community Composting.
Finally, philanthropic funding of roughly $3 billion is needed to fund solutions that create public benefits or have costs and benefits that accrue to different organizations. In addition, nearly a billion dollars of impact investments, a major source of catalytic financing, is needed in the form of low-interest loans and high-risk equity investments. Catalytic financing is needed to overcome system-level bottlenecks, de-risk new innovations or novel projects, overcome agency problems, and stimulate projects with marginal economics.
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